Communal worship is not currently permitted during the new lockdown, but we will continue to broadcast audio services on Radio Cherwell and our parish website, and our church building will remain open for private prayer and for funeral services. We are asked to devote these four weeks to prayer, joining together in prayer at 6pm every day – resources are on the Church of England website and will be shared round our parish WhatsApp group. If you can, please light a candle in your window at 6pm daily as a sign of Christ’s light shining in the darkness.
Donate to HTHQ while you shop
If you are carrying out any shopping via Amazon, please consider supporting Holy Trinity by clicking this link to our Smile Amazon page before you begin your shopping. Once you click the link, you can carry on with your Amazon shopping in the normal way, and our church will receive a donation at no cost to you: https://smile.amazon.co.uk/ch/1138600-0
Advent and Christmas plan
We are busy working on plans to mark Advent and Christmas, and will announce more details on Advent Sunday, 29th November. We will hold two online services to mark Advent Sunday: an Advent Carol Service and a Eucharist. Advent is a time of prayerful preparation for the coming of Our Lord, and in due course we will share further resources to aid us in our Advent devotions.
Building Project News
On Wednesday 4th November, Oxford City Council approved our planning application for the church extension, a resubmission of the original plans approved in 2016. At the meeting, council members spoke positively about the sensitive design of the extension, and about supporting our clear need for better facilities and accessibility. Jennifer Carpenter spoke against the plans on behalf of the Holy Trinity Preservation Group, and concerns were raised about the need to protect existing graves and the possibility of unmarked graves underneath the new extension. Laura assured the committee that we will deal sensitively with these concerns, which are also addressed in the faculty permission, and asks you to continue to pray for the project as we move forwards positively and peacefully.
The PCC are now discussing a proposal to phase the building project, which means that the interior lighting work and other electrical rewiring would take place first, before the extension and other reordering work. The proposed new lighting design from Light Perceptions Ltd can be viewed on the church website.
The PCC will meet on Wednesday 25th November at 7.30pm via Zoom. We cannot leave approved minutes of meetings at the back of church any more, but anyone on the electoral roll is welcome to view minutes that have been approved and deemed non-confidential, and can request these electronically from the PCC secretary (email@example.com) or in paper copy from the parish office.
We are currently exploring whether it would be possible to do some outdoor carol singing at set locations around the parish, in collaboration with other churches. A lot depends on the Covid-19 guidance that will be in place at the time, but we have provisionally set at date of Monday 21st December at 5pm. More information to follow!
As we approach what looks like set to be a difficult winter, we are forming a network of care groups within the church community. Group members will be asked to pray for one another, and also to provide practical support to one another if necessary. You should hear about your group in the coming weeks, and if you don’t wish to be part of this scheme, please just let Laura know.
Oxford’s Christmas Light Festival
Please see https://www.oxlightfest.com/ for more information about the Christmas Light Festival taking place throughout the city on November 20th-22nd. Please do get creative by making something illuminated to share online, or making a local light trail, or writing a message of hope and inspiration. Do take a look at the outdoor Christmas tree we have installed in the churchyard as part of the festival. ‘The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it’ (John 1.5).
The latest newsletter has been sent to those on the mailing list and can be viewed here: https://www.hthq.uk/newsletter/
Prayers for Hope and Healing
Our fortnightly contemplative prayer gathering will continue on Thursday 3rd December at 8.30pm on Zoom.
We will now meet via Zoom at 9am on Mondays.
More Tea Vicar
Please join Laura for a Zoom cup of tea and chat every Wednesday at 3pm.
Although we cannot gather this year to write Amnesty greetings cards, we invite you to visit the Amnesty website to participate in the campaigns online: https://www.amnesty.org.uk/write-for-rights
Welcome to Placement Students
We are delighted to welcome Ninus Khako and Ash David, from Ripon College Cuddesdon, as placement students this year. We look forward to getting to know them and supporting them on their journey towards ordination.